tv The Last Word MSNBC June 1, 2011 3:00am-4:00am EDT
she may have enough power not running as the guy who gates the nomination. if it's not a tea partier. she'll tell him to picric perry of texas as his running mate. she'll just do it, you watch. that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. "last word with lawrence o'donnell" starts right now. i'm chris hayes in for lawrence o'donnell. poor mitt romney and tim pawlenty are desperately trying to get attention for their campaigns. romney even attacked a president in an interview. donald trump knocked them away by having dinner tonight with sarah palin. >> right now we've got these shots of her. >> sarah palin is heading right for us. >> easy rider. >> the sarah palin spectacle rolls up the east coast sucking up all of the media attention. >> we're like media moths to the flame. >> on a noncampaign bus. >> maybe it's a hybrid pretty occasion. >> nicely put.
>> thank you. >> good for her. >> she say this is is not a campaign tour. >> running for president isn't like opening a lemonade stand on the corner. >> i reid, really don't think she's going to run. >> a big fat weekend of nothing. >> palin's vacation comes at the expense of over republicans. >> romney, huntsman, pawlenty. >> the summer of speculation. >> rude eye giuliani is hinting he will join. >> republicans' biggest problems may be governors from their own party. >> this wave of governors that came in last fall. >> rick perry deciding to listen again. >> strickland in ohio now losing. >> president obama is especialing his ground game in places like florida. >> rick scott has the lowest approval rating of any governor. >> republicans in washington aren't helping either. >> this is kind of a way of trying to embarrass the president. >> a vote on raising the debt ceiling. >> it's expected to fail. >> it isn't expected to pass.
>> doomed to fail today. >> the rest of washington wastes a day obsessing over a crotch shot. >> congressman anthony wiener has hired a lawyer. >> wiener claims somehow hacked into his account. >> a nude photograph was sent from his twitter account. >> a close up photo of a man in his underwear. >> it is easy to hack into a twitter account. >> telling politico, the weaner gags never get old. good evening from washington. today mark's sarah palin's third day of her personal publicity bus tour. through america's federally funded national historic sites. so far she and her family have visited the national archives. turned a memorial day to raise awareness for pows into a photo op of herself on a motorcycle. 58128 in fort mchenry, maryland, of what appears to be a federal employee tour guide in a hat. this is beyond red and blue if ever i've seen it. today they toured gettysburg and
the liberty bell in philadelphia. predictably reporters are chasing palin at every spot of her personal publicity tour as it rolls through the northeast. when the half term governor's trolling of the media can't get anymore transparent, she has decided to have dinner with another presidential faker donald trump. mean whim, the media is literally driving right by a real development in the republican presidential primary taking place in trenton, new jersey. that's where a group of iowa republicans are trying to convince another brash half term republican governor chris cristy to enter the presidential race. gop big money donor delightfully described as an iowa hog and ethanol baron along with a delegation of six other prominent iowa businessmen flew in by private jet to have dinner with cristy at the governor's mansion. this amounts to a little more than a hail mary pass from activists. governor cristy has repeatedly
said he is net running for president in 2012. it says a lot about the dissatisfaction republican haves with the gop field as it currently stands. these iowa donors are not interested in full term governor tim pawlenty who announced his campaign in iowa last monday or republican front runner mitt romney who served a full term as governor who has a major accomplishment to show for it. romney's presidential campaign which he will officially announce thursday in new hampshire continues to be dogged by the health care reform law he signed into law in massachusetts. in an interview with the "today" show, he defended the law which was the prototype for the national health care reform law signed by president obama last year. >> i understand that there are a lot of people who would just like me to get up and say it was a terrible idea. a bone headed idea. it's a terrible mistake. and there's only one problem with that, it wouldn't be honest.
what we did was to solve a very serious need that existed in our state. >> this issue will continue to dog romney's campaign. even when he offers up standard obama bashing red meat like this. >> overall give me a grade on his presidency. how has he done? >> he's failed. >> an f? >> absolutely. >> the democratic national committee gleefully points us to this. >> three years into the health care reform experiment governor romney gives it high praise. >> what's the report card look like? >> i give it an a. >> the heritage foundation worked with romney on the individual mandate. now the conservatives is a center right idea advocated by richard nixon and nursed in various right-wing think tanks. joining me now is msnbc contributor jonathan cape it's hart. >> thanks for having me, chris. >> what do you make of this mad dash to draft someone else this constantly casting one's eyes about and flying in private jets across the country. >> trying to convince people
that they would commit suicide in order to convince people that he does not want to be president. that he doesn't think he is ready to be president. incredible candor. still folks in the republican party are casting about. >> why is that? if you zoom out 1,000 miles and you view this as an alien from space and you were presented this -- mitt romney seems like a perfectly credible perfect candidate. tim pawlenty he was elected. he was a governor. >> twice. >> what's -- why are they so unsatisfied? >> i think, mitt romney's problem is that he was for one thing years ago and it was another thing in 2004, 2008 and now he's trying to be something else. tim pawlenty is someone who
people just -- he's just not exciting. he's not electric. he's great on paper. just not electric. sarah palin is the one who keeps teasing everyone that she's going to run. we all know she's not going to run. michelle bachmann is going to run. we all know that she possibly knows that she can't win. she could maybe win the nomination. she could never win the presidency from president obama. they are desperate. think about it, democrats at this time they had their candidates. they were wildly excited about just about every democrat who ran and unfortunately it's not the same with the republicans. >> i think this sort of obsession with cristy is particularly revealing for this reason, he's become not only a hero in conservative circles. but there's also a sense that he's giving people what he wants and his tough bull in a china shop routine wears well and that's what america's for. pollers found his net negative
favorablity rating 40%. 45% have an unfavorable view. this is the guy, the guy who is unfavorable view in his own state who they're going to. what does that say about this sort of gap about the reality in republican circles and what voters want. >> i think what's going on with cristy is people love the fact that he is not afraid to tell the truth. he's not afraid to be candid. he's not afraid to yell at people for yelling at him. it's great. it's refreshing in politics where everyone is so preprogrammed. i work first-degree for mike bloomberg on his first campaign for mayor. this was a man who came into office who had to close a $6 billion budget gap. he went after taxes. he went after smoking. his poll numbers plummeted. even said he was done. he was over. within three years he was re-elected by the second highest margin in new york city history just second to la gaurda.
i think people in the republican party are looking at chris cristy and those poll numbers saying that's a snapshot in time. that's now. who knows where he could be this time next year. i still don't think they'll convince him to get in. >> i guess my final question here is about the kind of long-term trends. it seems to me like the panic in some ways as someone who spends a lot of time around democrats and liberals the worry there is about the economy and what's so strange about this sort of panic on the republican side to find a new candidate, the economic numbers are incredibly soft. we have growth numbers out from the first quarter down to 1.6%. it seems like that's going to be the thing that's going to determine ultimately this outcome. >> it could be no matter who the republicans put up, the president could give that person a run for his money simply because the american people are not feeling the economic
recovery as we see it now and maybe it's not a recovery a year from now. or you know, the american people are you know, we went for change in 2008. it's time to change again in 2012 whether that's romney or pawlenty or bachmann, who knows. >> we've seen that restlessness in the last election. 2008 was anti-incumbent. you've seen this serial discontent. >> i would actually argue that we have seen the american electorate has been restless since 2000. since the fight between bush and gore. they have been sending congress back and forth between republicans and democrats not so much the white house but with president obama they said we want change. in the special elections in new jersey, the massachusetts senate race, virginia they said, not so much. so the american people are they're a little cranky. >> appreciate it. >> thank you. joining me now is a washington correspondent for "the new yorker" magazine.
>> how are you, chris? >> you have a good piece this week tracking how romney's health care legislation came about and how it influenced the white house. we see the white house applying this death hug all the time to romney over the health care bill. i wonder how much relationship do the two pieces of legislation actually bear to each other? >> the main architecture is identical. you have this idea that we should subsidize the poor to buy private insurance, right. there are other ways you can expand health insurance coverage for people. the way that romney did it and the way that obama did it they wanted private insurance. you give subsidies to the folks who can't afford it. if you do that, you've got to fix the individual insurance market. it's very difficult to buy insurance on the individual market. you set up an insurance exchange. it's modelled on a stock market
exchange or ebay or car max. a single place where it's easy to buy something. once you do those two things you need to basically get everyone in the same insurance pool so insurance premiums aren't out of control so you're not just getting sick to sign up. we need a mandate to tell everybody that they have to carry health insurance. subsidies, insurance exchange, mandate was first tried and frankly successfully in massachusetts. nowhere else. and the main people who helped romney put that plan together became very influential in the washington debate. in essence that model was exported from boston to washington. ted kennedy, gruber the economist who helped romney with his plan became the principal health care economist for the white house who did the model elling. folks like john kingsdale who ran romney care became an influential person for the white
house and for the hill in testifying and explaining how that plan worked in massachusetts and how you could apply it nationally. so the linkage is very direct, chris. >> you've got this scene in the magazine article in which romney is making a huge pomp and circumstances of signing the bill. it was a triumphant moment that was seen as a spring board to national political aspirations. there's a great quote from jim demin saying basically, i think romney would make a great president look at his compromise in health care in massachusetts. what has changed this was the top item on his resume to this universe in which it is the number one thing emperilling his shot at nomination. >> jim demint ranks him as the most republican hero in the senate. look what's happened since 2006-2007 when this was seen as a successful piece of legislation by conservatives, romney's health care bill is a
pop list uprising some of libertarian surge in the republican party. i think you could pinpoint the date almost in the wake of the financial crisis when the house of representatives voted against the first bush bank bail out bill. i think ever since that moment you had a cascading series of events that have pushed the republican party in a more libertarian anti-government direction. that happens anyway when you have a democratic president. it happened with clinton. it happened with carter. it happened with johnson. it happened with kennedy. it's a fundamental fact of american politics. when you have a democratic party conservatives go way to the right. but in addition to that you had a liberal agenda that was pretty aggressive. you had a bailout -- you had tarp that obama inherited. you had a pretty aggressive health care plan, cap and trade.
all things on the right's eyes were -- >> the dreaded overreach. his article about romney care is in this issue of "the new yorker." you have to pick it up on the yorker." you have to pick it up on the newsstands. it is not available online. thanks a lot. >> thanks, chris. coming up, the voting grower's remorris over the election of republican governors. could it give president obama's re-election bid a big boost. and the disingenuous debate over the debt ceiling reaches a sad and confusing new low tonight. why the republicans aloud an up or down vote in the house with no strings attached. to your kids' wet skin. new neutrogena® wet skin kids with helioplex. the first sunblock designed to be applied directly to wet skin. ordinary sunblock drips and whitens. neutrogena® wet skin kids instantly cuts through water. forms a broad spectrum protective barrier. with wet skin kids, your kids have full strength sun protection.
controversial republican governors in critical battle ground states helped paved the way for the re-election of president obama. up next, former michigan governor talks about the republican overreach. and later, the right-wing smear merchant sets his sights on a new target, congressman anthony wiener. a brief tour of his latest lie
the months leading up to the 2008 elections, republican congressman tom davis wrote, the republican brand is in the trash can. if we were dog food, they would take us off the shelf. five months after first term republican governors from florida to ohio to wisconsin were sworn-in, new polls show signs of a similarity politically toxic atmosphere for republicans.
an extreme buyers' remorse following last fall's 2010 elections. in florida lex luther look alike governor rick scott is winning the republican governor's race to the bottom. a recent poll shows his approval rating at 29% and his disapproval rating at 57 percent. that's the lowest approval rating of any governor in the country. while florida's housing market craters and residents struggle with the ongoing jobs' crisis, governor scott signed a bill requiring federal welfare recipients to submit to drug tests. he has signed an order requiring random drug tests of many current state attorneys. his laser like focus on drug testing is raising suspicions that scott is using his office to funnel money to a chain he founded that specializes in drug testing. you'll neets the importance of florida's 29 electoral votes. barack obama won florida by three points in 2008.
governor rick scott's approval ratings continue to tank, he'll almost certainly weigh down the prospects of the eventual republican presidential nominee. if republicans lose florida in 2012, they can pull out a victory by winning the state of ohio. yikes. there's republican governor john casic. his basest loss is among republicans a 23-point drop in just two months. this trend continues. his union busting and spending cuts could cost republicans ohio's 18 electoral votes in the 2012 presidential race. that's just florida and ohio. public policy polling asked voters if you could do last fall's election for governor over again, how would you vote? remarkably in seven out of eight races including michigan,
pennsylvania, wisconsin, iowa and georgia, the democrat would win if the race were held today. joining me now is jennifer graham home former governor of michigan and currently practitioner of law and public policy at the university of california berkeley. >> thanks for having me on. >> you're currently writing a book called "the governor's story", the lessons from michigan's experience. the current governor rick snyder has job approval ratings quite low 33%. i wonder what you think the wrong lessons are that he took away? >> i'm not going to talk about him. i can tell you that i think what happened in november is the republicans were elected, took what they thought a lesson to america which is all about cutting. what the people i think voted for was change. those are not necessarily the same thing.
people wanted to see a governor focus on jobs and what you're seeing in many of these states is governors that are focused on cutting funding for planned parenthood or drug testing, things that are not going to salvage the economy. frankly, chris, as a governor of a state what has been in an economic crisis for many, many years because of the meltdown in the auto industry, you know, governors are realizing in the same way that people are realizing that a governor does not have a magic wand. and cannot do the things perhaps that they campaigned on like fixing the economy. >> well, that brings me to the second point, which is that 49 i believe of 50 states have state constitutions that bind them to balance their budgets every year and that's obviously extremely difficult during the most acute recession since the great depression. and so what we're seeing is sort of fiscal contraction in the states. we're seeing layoffs of state workers and stuff. do you think the federal government has sort of dropped the ball? i mean, has it been insufficient support from the federal government? is that part of the problem
here? >> i think clearly the federal government must play a bigger role in economic growth in our country like the governments of other countries are doing. i think that the old theory of laissez faire, hands off, a government shouldn't be involved in job growth or in the economy is completely unakronistic in a global economy. when we're competing with countries that are intervening to be able to save jobs. that's why i think the federal support is to create ways that the u.s. can be more competitive. that is what is necessary. you need an active, strategic, smart government, but hands off is not going to do it anymore. specially given that this is a structural change in our nation's economy. >> that's a long-term answer. i want to sort of focus for a second about the short-term. you're right. clearly there's a whole variety of things that need to be done
in terms of long-term policy about how we create full employment and robust and equatablely distribute growth in. the short-term with the cratering of demand that we're seeing particularly in the state of michigan hit as hard as any state many the union, what should we be doing? what do we say to people on the unemployment lines? >> i can tell you in 2010 michigan's job growth was greater than any state in the country. even after we had been through this meltdown because we had a partnership with the federal government for job creation in the automotive sector as well as in the clean energy sector. one of the reasons why we saw such growth was because we had strategic public-private partnerships to make that happen. what you're seeing when you think when rick scott turned that money back that these other governors didn't step up and say, hey, i'll take that if it's going to create jobs in my state, that's the kind of
partnership that we need both with the federal government and a partnership between the public sector and private sector if we're going to create jobs in this nation. the mother of all potential marks, chris, is this clean energy economy. other countries are stepping up and have jumped over the united states very readily. we had a huge jump in china's investment. not just china, but the private sector investment in china because policy matters between china and germany and other countries are leaping over us because we're doing nothing. that's why we need to step up our game in this global economy to create jobs here. >> finally i want to ask you a question about governor snyder's wast been called a financial marshal law. it gives civil servants to override governments, wipeout union contracts. there are a lot of people that look at this and find it grimly undemocratic. >> chris, here's the challenges
i have really publicly and repeatedly said i'm not going to criticize by successor because it's a bogus thing to do. i'm happy to criticize the governors in other states. i am. i'm totally happen to do that. >> we'll -- >> happy to do that. i do think there is a huge amount of buyers' remorse because i think citizens want to see a focus on job creation. not a focus on other issues that don't mean anything to thechl they certainly don't want to see their health care benefits cut and i think the backlash that's happening on the federal level is also going to happen inside the state houses. >> a very gracious jennifer granholm former governor of michigan. thanks so much for your time tonight. >> you bet. coming up, republican's stunt on the debt ceiling. everyone agrees the debt ceiling has to be raised. but first a vote where everyone can vote against it. and later the crisis in the real estate market. home prices falling to new lows again. in the absurd files wait until you hear who bank of america has to foreclose on. [ doctor ] here's some health information for people over 50.
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still ahead in this hour, a short while ago the house of representatives failed to pass a bill to raise the nation's debt ceiling. something that even john boehner said if not passed would result in quote, financial disaster. why tonight's vote was a complete joke coming up. and on saturday congressman anthony wiener was apparently the victim of a twitter hack.
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many the spotlight tonight, as expected the house of representatives has just failed to pass a one and one-half page bill to raise the debt ceiling $2.4 trillion without federal spending cuts attached. the vote was 97-318. soor row republicans voted in favor of the bill. in other words, republicans were in unanimous agreement that the bill to raise the debt ceiling should not pass despite being in unanimous agreement that the debt ceiling must be raised by the august 2nd deadline. in january house speaker john boehner explained high that should happen. >> it would be a financial disaster not only for our country, but for the worldwide economy. >> that makes tine's joke a
vote. a stunt. it was an attempt to put house democrats on record for voting to raise the nation's debt ceiling without spending cuts attached so republicans can run campaign ads saying that so and so doesn't care about the debt. democrats knew that was the strategy. house minority whip steny hoyer told reporters before a caucus meeting on the vote quote, i'm going to advise my members that they should not subject themselves to the demagoguery that would surely follow. that mike shower that republican joke did not result in worldwide financial disasters, republicans held the vote after the markets had closed and warned wall street that they would vote down the bill. an executive for the chamber of commerce told "the new york times" today, wall street is in on the joke. you know, if you had to come up with an epitaph for this sorry corrupt age, i think wall street
is in on the joke would do just about as well as any. joining me now is oregon democratic congressman earl bloomen our who voted for the bill. thanks for joining me. >> my pleasure zblch why did you choose to vote for the bill despite the fact that you were warned about the demagoguery that would follow and it had no chance of passing? >> i think it's important to lay down a marker. i and actually more than 100 democrats offered to speaker boehner to be able to provide enough votes for a clean increase in the debt ceiling so he wouldn't be held hostage to the extreme right-wing ideologues in his caucus. they made a decision that they're going to try to use taking the debt ceiling hostage to be able to jam through more tax cuts and eliminating the protection of the medicare guarantee for senior citizens as their price. i think it's wrong.
i think people will see through it. we already saw an indication last week, a week ago tonight in new york, upstate new york many the congressional race that people are not that excited about invis rating medicare and tax cuts for people who don't need them. i think in this charade is going to wear thin. >> let's listen -- speaking of this proposed hostage exchange of medicare cuts for the debt ceiling bill, let's listen to senate minority leader mitch mcconnell on sunday. >> i can assure you, david, that to get my vote to raise the debt ceiling for whatever that's worth, my one vote medicare will be a part of it. the details of that are yet to be negotiated. >> do you have to keep the basis of the medicare -- >> okay.
so congressman, here's my question. they've set it up as a hostage exchange. they say you give us medicare cuts or the debt ceiling vote gets it. of course, if they pull the trigger on that, wall street's going to go bonkers. >> right. >> if everybody knows that, why not make them call the bluff. literally, go in and say you need to pass the debt ceiling. do your best. >> as i said, doing it cleanly, directly, straight up i think is the responsible thing to do. what you have just described is the scene out of "blazing saddles" where the sheriff puts the gun to his head and says, one more step and i shoot the sheriff. they can't do this. we should empower them. we should hold firm. we're not going to participate in legislative hostage taking. i hope the president carries that message when he comes to capitol hill tomorrow to meet with the republicans and later with the democrats. we need to put a stop to it. it will only continue.
these are the people that we're willing to shut down the government in order to take away money from planned parenthood and big bird and we're going to be facing this again and again. we ought to call a halt to it. >> i want to talk finally about the politics of this. one of the thing that's been a little disturbing throughout this entire debt ceiling debate from the very beginning of january is that polling has consistently shown a majority, a robust majority of americans opposed to raising the debt ceil chg is why the political threat of this empty vote today had consequences. how did we get here? we have a recent "the washington post" poll more americans are concerned with the consequences of not raising the debt ceiling? how did we get here politically and how do you educate voters in your district about what this vote means? >> first of all, we got to this point because we haven't had any honest conversation about what it means to honor our
commitment. if we were to fail to pay our debts, it would have catastrophic effects for the entire economy in a global sense. the fact is that the republican budget actually will require us to borrow trillions more even if we do make cuts to medicare. in this system tax cuts to reduce revenues. you have to deal with it straight up. i'm happy to look anybody in the eye and explain what the facts are. sometimes you can't put your i think if tore the wind. i will tell you between now and next november what's going to be much more significant than a spring vote on the debt ceiling is going to be what they propose to do to slash medicare, to raise taxes for people that don't need it, to increase the national debt and to do things that are contrary to what americans want. that is where we're going. i think that's the message that's going to be predominant. >> thank you, congressman.
finally one last little question. are you confident that the white house is going to toe the line on this? are you received ashurns that they're not going to bargain away medicare cuts in exchange for a yes vote? >> i don't know. i would hope that the president would stand firm on this, on tax cuts, on the budget. because we've seen that the republicans keep moving the goal post. they're not going to be satisfied. we already have a program to reduce medicare spending. it's the health care reform we passed last session. it will save over a trillion dollars. what we ought to be doing is accelerating those savings rather than screwing around with taking away the protections for older americans. >> well said. thanks so much for your time tonight. i really appreciate it. >> my pleasure. coming up, an apparent internet hack involving anthony wiener results in a blogger's claim on national television
coming up, as house prices reveal new weaknesses in the economy, there is news today of a prominent foreclosure that could make you laugh or cry. later there's an attack again. this time he's railing against congressman weaner trying to create controversy about a bizarre picture sent on the congressman's twitter account. . and when it does, men with erectile dysfunction can be more confident in their ability to be ready with cialis for daily use. cialis for daily use is a clinically proven low-dose tablet you take every day
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the undisputed champion of the genre is "the onion." back in 1988 when there seemed to be a mu starbucks on every other block, they ran this headline, new starbucks opens in restroom of existing starbucks. i thought of that fake news article today when i stumbled across a headline that seemed just as absurd, but this is the real deal. from "the wall street journal's" website, bank of america forecloses on itself. or another headline, bank of america foreclosing on building with branch office. the branch is the anchor for a strip mall in boyton beach, florida.
the company who owns the property owes $7.5 million on the mortgage. so there it's happened. officially the foreclosure crisis in this country as acute and destructive as it's ever been has gotten so bad, it is beyond satire. take the new housing numbers out today. single family home prices fell 3.6% in march when compared to march of last year. that index fell to a historic low in april of 2009. there's a rebound that started late 2009 and lasted through last year thanks largely to the first time home buyers' tax credit and now back down again leading the a dreaded double dip in the housing market. numbers are down in cities across the country with minneapolis hit the hardest. the only city to see a double digit drop in home prices down 10% in just one year. the first quarter of this year 28%, 28% of is the mortgages on single family homes in this country were still underwater.
that means borrowers owed more on the loan than the house was worth. still, remarkably infour yatingly no one in the federal government really seems to care enough to do anything about it. very simple chain of causuation here. the properties won't recover until the housing market stabilizes. the housing market won't stabilize until with the millions of unaffordable mortgages. the way out of the mess is clear. the president can use the power from the original tarp legislation to man date real modifications. judges can restructure mortgages on primary residences as they are currently able to do on vacation homes and yes, yachts. none of this is happening, however. even a democratic congress couldn't pass bankruptcy reform and the administration's loan modification program is a grotesque embarrassment. everyone in washington seems to be content to pretend the problem will go way a. today's housing numbers show there's no way to sever the fate of the economy from the fate of
the housing market. incumbent politicians including the president there's no way to sever their individual election chances from the state of the economy. if enough people are kicked out of their homes, you're likely to find yourself kicked out of houses. if bank of america can be foreclosed on, so metaphorically at least can you. coming up, bizarre story surrounding congressman anthony wiener gets brightbart frothing at the mouth. his strategy of attack first, community. while i've been sneezing from the dust in here, and the pollen outside. but with 24-hour zyrtec®, i get prescription strength relief from my allergy symptoms.
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>> andrew brightbart best known for his involvement in the shirly sha rad fiasco is at it again. this time he's going after congressman weaner of new york. he began on sunday when he posted a lewd photo sent through wiener's twitter page to a 21-year-old woman in seattle who follows his account. wiener said he was the victim of a hacker and the picture was deleted. he's hired an attorney to investigate. the intended recipient issued a statement saying, i have never met congressman weaner. there have never been any inappropriate exchanging including the tweet picture which had been deleted before it reached me. i do not have a clear understanding as to how or why exactly a. involved in this fiasco. we're all wondering the same thing. this afternoon cnn invited brightbart on the air to explain
how he learned of the messages. he be says they were forwarded to him by another conservative blogger. but he didn't stop there. >> he's been monitoring weaner for quite some time now. because according to his theory, and i don't know him that well, he's been monitoring relationships that congressman weaner has been having with woman, young woman who claim to have relationships with him. i'm not saying what type of relationships, but people have he follows. girls that are quite young. younger than the girl in question here talk openly about rep wiener. >> girls that are quite young. i know a guy who says these things. he implied he is an adulterer
and far worse the fact that he was able to smear wiener on live tv was not lost on cnn's own senior legal analyst. >> what andrew brightbart was insinuating about him with young girls and stuff is outrageous. frankly it's too bad that he got to say that stuff on cnn. >> i agree. joining me now msnbc contributor alex wagner of the huffington post. how are you? >> i'm great, chris, how are you? >> alex, when i see clips like this, i want to give up. seriously, i am like -- it's so propostrouse. am i wrong in my level of outrage that this person who's been so discredited so many times is such a serial ma anyone lator of the media is allowed to come on and spout off like this. >> it's true. he's not known to be the most self-reflective remorseful person. in that same interview he talked art the shirly sha regard story being a liberal attack on him.
they said there was some redemptic arc that everybody was missing in the story. i think he as a source has been largely discredited. i would say and as you know i'm not an opposition researcher for the conservative wing of the republican party, but you know, wiener did have an informal press gaggle today and refused to answer the question about whether he sent this tweet, whether he was following a 21-year-old undergraduate on his twitter account, and if so why. and i'm not saying that he has relations with these women, it does beg the question why are you following these young women that have nothing to do with your political career. >> does it beg that question? i saw the same exchange with dana bash. they put out these statements and they said categorically the account was hacked. this is a prank we're moving on. i don't know anything about what the actual substance of what happened was.
it just seems to me like there has to be a standard. we're going to move into day two of this invented scandal about questions about him not answering the questions. >> i think you're correct. i think the idea that we're already putting this guy on trial without having any evidence that any wrong doing has occurred is legit. but at the same time, wiener is a savvy guy. he understands how the media works. to some extent, weaner, if you don't want this to be a distraction, put a nail in the coffin. answer the questions directly and move on. but the fact that he keeps going back to this i will not answer it's a distraction over and over again, it leaves the american public scratching their heads thinking maybe there is something here. which is highly unfortunate. >> wait. i want to make sure that i'm clear on the facts here. >> i don't think anybody's clear on the facts. >> clearly we're not clear on the bottom -- the base principal fundamental fact which is who sent this photo, which how are we talking about this photo.
>> i will say this, in the day and age of chris lee and facebook and you have you know, you know, a string of litany of republican sexual harassment and questionable sexual acts. >> we have to get the shot up. there we go. >> you have chris lee and john ensign fresh in our collective memory to some degree i think there's concern that this is part of brightbart's agenda to balance the ledger. there's that. and obviously that leads to its own media frenzy. i think congressman like anthony wiener are conducting business over social media. and they are public figures. they've chose on the get involved in twitter and as such, there's inevitably going to be some questioning when things like this happen. >> i agree there will be questioning.